During the heat of the summer, it is important to do what you can to keep your calves cool, hydrated, and comfortable. Younger animals are at a higher risk of heat stress than older cattle. Here are a few tips:
• Provide calves with free choice clean & fresh water. Top up pails during the day if needed.
• Hot & humid weather = increased mold growth in feed. Pails should be kept clean and calf starter should be dumped and refreshed daily. This will also reduce flies.
• Adapt calf housing. For hutch calves, consider moving them to an area where there is reduced afternoon sun exposure. Prop up the back of the hutch with a cement block to increase air flow. For calf barns, work with your ventilation system to maximize fresh air & air movement while avoiding a direct draft on calves.
• Avoid stress: Try and work with your calves (vaccination, dehorning, moving cattle) on a cooler day or first thing in the morning.
• Implement a fly control program
For more tips and ideas to keep your calves cool this summer contact our JFM Calf Team.